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Is there any lifestyle more romantic than that of the expatriate writer living in Paris? Ward Just certainly couldn’t resist the calling. After returning from Vietnam as a correspondent for the Washington Post, the chain-smoking Just (now at four packs a day at age 62!) couldn’t take the war-torn mores of the States and made a beeline for the City of Lights. There he began creating the rich political fiction that would one day make him, according to the New York Times, “the most literary chronicler of the daily lives and moral dilemmas of contemporary politicians.” Just drinks hard, lives hard, and writes hard. Papa Hemingway would be proud. So smoke ’em if you got ’em when Just comes to town to discuss and sign his 12th novel, Echo House, at 7:30 p.m. at Barnes & Noble, 3040 M St. NW. FREE. (202) 965-9880; 7 p.m. Tuesday at Olsson’s, 1200 F St. NW. FREE. (202) 347-3685; and 7 p.m. Wednesday at Politics & Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. FREE. (202) 364-1919. (Sean Daly)